Michael Jones is a creative copywriter, brand strategist, fruit snack addict and the founder of The Stylish Standout, where he helps professionals, side hustlers, entrepreneurs fast-track their transformation through branding and verbal identity. He also manages The Standpoint, a blog on branding, business and verbal identity—from a distinct point of view.
Most recently, Michael was the assistant digital style editor at the now-defunct LuckyShops.com, where he reported and edited features on product launches, emerging designers, and on-brand collaborations; edited trend- and market-based shopping guides; and wrote “Ask Michael,” a weekly style-advice column. And he loved every single nanosecond of it.
Prior to LuckyShops, he crafted e-commerce copy for ShopBAZAAR.com, Harper’s BAZAAR’s e-commerce destination. Additionally, Michael served as contributing fashion assistant at Lucky, editing the home and tech markets and coordinating all still-life photography for the magazine.
Before relocating to New York City to pursue (and achieve!) his life-long dream of becoming a fashion editor, Michael was a corporate trainer for a start-up financial services company. He developed, designed, and delivered dynamic curriculum on topics including talent and performance management, diversity and equality, leadership, process improvement and quality assurance, and steered corporate strategy across several business lines.
Michael studied journalism at Texas A&M University-Commerce and was born and raised in Dallas, where my obsession with skinny pants began.
Table of Contents
- Early Life
- Bit By The Editing Bug
- New York City: The Big Move
- Doing His Own Thing Now
Michael Jones was born in Dallas and raised in the eastern suburb of Mesquite, Texas. Growing up, Michael lived a simple life: church on Wednesdays and Sundays (followed by Dallas Cowboys football), track meets on Saturdays (his older sister Ty was an all-star sprinter), early curfews, lots of family gatherings—you get the picture. His parents weren’t wildly political, but raised Michael and his sister to support close-to-home issues including equality, voting rights for minorities, and social justice.
Michael’s mom was his first introduction to personal style. In retrospect, it’s through her discerning eye, attention to detail, and willingness to experiment that later informed Michael’s point of view as a fashion editor. His career aspirations began to crystallize during his senior year when he enrolled in a journalism class to satisfy fulfill his final elective requirement. It was then, he decided, that he would be a journalist.
Immediately after receiving his acceptance letter to Texas A&M University-Commerce, Michael declared journalism as his major. Itching to write on day one, he covered the sports beat and wrote news and features on the soccer, football, and basketball teams. In 2006, Michael joined The East Texan, A&M-Commerce’s student-led newspaper, full-time as the community editor—at 19, he was the youngest and only Black editor at the time.
To fill his pages each week, Michael conceived “On The Scene in Commerce,” a weekly column that spotlighted small businesses. He profiled the owners, negotiated exclusive discounts for students, and took readers behind the scenes of the town’s most under-the-radar local establishments. His work in The East Texan contributed to the newspaper receiving the Overall Excellence award from the Texas Intercollegiate Press Association.
In addition to his role on the newspaper, Michael also secured three notable internships: Assistant Events Coordinator at Dallas Contemporary, Public Relations Intern at VolunteerNow (formerly The Volunteer Center of North Texas), and Donor Recognition and Events Coordinator at Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts.
During his final internship, he and a group of interns from other Dallas-based organizations appeared in Fox 4 News “Hometown Heroes,” a popular segment hosted by television news anchor Clarice Tinsley. Michael also received the Martin Luther King Jr. Student of the Year award from Hopkins County for the impact he made on and off campus in the city of Commerce, Texas.
In 2008, Michael received his first professional freelance assignment to cover the fall collections at New York Fashion Week for Splash Magazines Worldwide. He attended and reported on several collections including Michael Kors, Bill Blass, Malan Breton, Milly by Michelle Smith and Sean John. After returning to school after NYFW, Michael assembled a team of ambitious, emerging journalists and launched JAYE, a digital magazine targeted to college-aged women. Editors from his team went on to intern and/or work at Teen Vogue, Cosmopolitan, Allure, StyleCaster, EBONY, Seventeen, and Marie Claire.
Michael knew he would eventually make NYC home. But for the next five years, he shifted from retail management to corporate training and development for clients including Bank of America and Chase. The catalyst for his move came in the form of a job layoff. And in 2014, Michael booked a one-way flight on a Monday, moved the following Saturday, and hit the ground hustling. Between networking events in the fashion, tech, and business spaces and freelance projects, he connected with influencers and continued to shape his unique point of view on personal style and branding.
Michael’s ultimate dream though was for Eva Chen at Lucky, where she was leading the transformation of the brand into a content-meets-commerce destination. He didn’t have to wait long: Four months after relocating to the Big Apple, Michael got his break when a position in the Lucky fashion closet opened up.
For the next six months, Michael was surrounded by the most talented, stylish and generous group of editors in the industry who taught him how to request and edit samples, nurture industry relationships, implement efficient processes and systems, and find the magic in every story idea.
Michael went on to edit the home and tech markets and work with the magazine’s roster of photographers and stylists to produce all in-book still-life photography at Condé Nast’s first-class photo studio in One World Trade Center. He also did other awesome stuff like contribute cover lines, attend swanky events, and bring way too much swag home every night.
When the print magazine folded, Michael went to ShopBAZAAR.com, Harper’s Bazaar’s e-commerce destination, to write product copy before being called back to Lucky, this time to work on the digital side. He interviewed designers, edited shopping guides, and wrote a weekly column called “Ask Michael” (translation: he had the best job in the world). But all good things come to an end. His last day was also Lucky’s last day, as the brand ceased editorial operations in October 2015.
Once the magazine closed, I grew tired of companies laying me off. So I decided to go relaunch The Stylish Standout as a branding and copywriting studio for fashion, luxury, lifestyle, tech and e-commerce brands and more. Explore Michael’s capabilities and portfolio then contact him—he’d love to help you say it with your words, create income through impact and increase your influence. Because you weren’t made to fit in.